Lawrence James





Lawrence James


Born
in Bath, Somerset, The United Kingdom
May 26, 1943

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Edwin James Lawrence, most commonly known as Lawrence James, is an English historian and writer.

James graduated with a BA in English & History from the University of York in 1966, and subsequently undertook a research degree at Merton College, Oxford. Following a career as a teacher, James became a full-time writer in 1985.

James has written several works of popular history about the British Empire, and has contributed pieces for Daily Mail, The Times and the Literary Review.

Average rating: 3.99 · 2,636 ratings · 215 reviews · 36 distinct worksSimilar authors
The Rise and Fall of the Br...

3.88 avg rating — 1,023 ratings — published 1994 — 14 editions
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Raj: The Making and Unmakin...

3.77 avg rating — 547 ratings — published 1997 — 6 editions
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Aristocrats: Power, Grace, ...

3.29 avg rating — 128 ratings — published 2010 — 8 editions
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Churchill and Empire: A Por...

3.59 avg rating — 64 ratings — published 2013 — 11 editions
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Warrior Race: A History of ...

3.57 avg rating — 58 ratings — published 2001 — 8 editions
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The Golden Warrior: The Lif...

3.44 avg rating — 50 ratings — published 1994 — 11 editions
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Empires in the Sun: The Str...

3.67 avg rating — 30 ratings — published 2016 — 8 editions
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The Middle Class

4.04 avg rating — 23 ratings — published 2006 — 6 editions
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The Iron Duke

3.69 avg rating — 13 ratings — published 1992 — 4 editions
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Crimea 1854-56: The War wit...

4.43 avg rating — 7 ratings — published 1981 — 2 editions
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“Later, when a political break with Britain seemed unavoidable, Franklin was distressed by its possible cultural repercussions for him and his countrymen. Would they be cut off for ever from Shakespeare?”
Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire

“History cannot be unwritten or written in the subjunctive, and the wholesale application of late twentieth-century values distorts the past and makes it less comprehensible.”
Lawrence James, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire

“pressure on these lines would hamper Turkish troop movements and might even encourage local resistance once it was clear that the Turks could not long shift men for punitive actions. Even the Hawran Druze might be nudged towards a descent on Dera. Again everything hinged on the Druze. There is nothing of all this in the Seven Pillars beyond a reference to Lawrence’s unquiet state of mind on the eve of his journey: ‘A rash adventure suited my mood’ which, to judge from an all but erased note in his campaign jottings, was almost suicidal.41 Clayton. I’ve decided to go off alone to Damascus, hoping to get killed on the way: for all our sakes try and clear up this show before it goes further. We are calling them to fight for us on a lie. This is all very perplexing. Soon after, in the Seven Pillars version, Lawrence admitted to the haziest knowledge of what McMahon had offered Hussain and how the boundaries of French and British concessions in the Middle East had been drawn by Sykes and Picot. In the Seven Pillars he also confessed to bewildered shame when Nuri Shalaan proffered ‘a file of British documents’ allegedly filled with official promises, and asked which one he ought to believe. Lawrence remained silent about their contents and who had drawn them up. What is more bewildering is that, in his report to Clayton, Lawrence claimed he met Nuri and his son at el Azraq towards the end of the Syrian trip. Maybe then he briefly succumbed to a mood of despair. It would have been understandable, not in terms of what others had or had not promised the Arabs, but because all his Syrian contacts, including Nuri, had responded to his calls for bold commitment with wary procrastination. Lawrence was taking enormous risks by penetrating enemy territory where pro-Turkish sympathies were still widespread. There was, he claimed, a £5,000 reward for his capture, which, if true, suggests that Turkish intelligence was aware of his activities. In fact, the head money was a general reward first announced some months earlier by Fahreddin Pasha for British officers taken dead or alive.42 Whether he travelled in search of intelligence or whether to get killed”
Lawrence James, The Golden Warrior: The Life and Legend of Lawrence of Arabia

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